Footballers are fantastic athletes and role models to the youthful generation. Their talents on the pitch are applauded and cheered on week in, week out by thousands of fans who pay hundreds of pounds to be entertained for 90 minutes.
Many fans travel the length of the country and far and wide across the globe for their team - yet don’t appear to rewarded.
Chelsea last week beat Basel to book a trip to the Europa League final in Amsterdam. The London club are in the unique position to win the Europa League the year after winning the Champions League; they can also join some of Europe’s elite clubs who have won all three major European trophies (Champions League, UEFA Cup/Europa League and the now defunct Cup Winner’s Cup).
Chelsea fans have been rewarded with 9800 tickets for the final of the competition. The Amsterdam Arena holds just under 50000 spectators and with Benfica also being dealt the same figure, 30000 tickets are expected to go to UEFA’s official partners.
Akin to this, the London Olympics received huge criticism for its handling of tickets. After a ballot of tickets and a second sale for events - which both sold out - many people were disheartened that lots of seats were gifted to sponsors of the Olympics. Fans were also irked that many of reserved seats, for the sponsors, were then shown to be empty when broadcast on TV.
Chelsea are estimated to have 24000 season tickets holders - meaning that more than 50% won’t get to see their team in their second successive European final.
The price for those that do get tickets can range from £39 up to £117; however Chelsea’s official ticketing partner, Viagogo, has had users advertising their cup final tickets at inflated prices.
After Bayern Munich’s demolition of Barcelona a quote emerged from Bayern’s President, Uli Hoeness, discussing season ticket prices.
He told reporters: “We could charge more than £104. Let's say we charged £300. We'd get £2m more in income but what's £2m to us?
“In a transfer discussion you argue about that sum for five minutes. But the difference between £104 and £300 is huge for the fan.
“We do not think the fans are like cows, who you milk. Football has got to be for everybody.
“That's the biggest difference between us and England.”
Earlier this season Manchester City fans publicly criticised the cost of their trip to the Emirates stadium. Equipped with banners, City fans showed their outrage at a £62 asking price to watch their team play Arsenal.
In the current climate it is difficult for fans to be able to pay such high prices for 90 minutes of entertainment. Teams like Wigan and QPR rarely sell out their stadium yet both charge more than Bayern for a season ticket.
Through thick and thin football fans support their clubs and it’s about time that the clubs and corporations repaid the faithful who have put them in the position that they are in today.
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